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Energy company RES has applied for permission to build a large biomass power station at the Port of Blyth, on the Northumberland shoreline.
The power station will burn at least 900,000 tonnes of wood. The planning application says very little about where the wood will come from, but the vast majority is expected to be imported. If RES get planning permission then they will be able to burn wood from anywhere in the world, whether from destructive logging of native Canadian forests, or from monoculture tree plantations in Brazil or West Africa (where such plantations are being rapidly expanded at the expense of local communities and ecosystems).
Local impacts on public health (through air pollution) and on the Northumberland shoreline -which is protected under national and European designations - could be severe.
Please support local residents opposed to the development by objecting to the application. For more background information, links, and suggestions of how to object, please go to www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2012/blyth_alert/ .
Please note that in order to comment on applications for power stations of that size in England, comments must be submitted by completing a form on the Planning Inspectorate's website (http://infrastructure.planningportal.gov.uk/projects/north-east/port-blyth-new-biomass-plant/?ipcsection=relreps). We could therefore not set up a simpler email alert, as we have done in other planning cases.
Please help by circulating this alert!
Updates on previous email alerts:
Good and bad news:
+ E.On's application which allows them to partially or fully convert Ironbridge power station from coal to biomass has been approved (so far up to the end of 2015) by Shropshire Council, despite lots of local and national objections. Thanks to everybody who objected to the application. This conversion plan is one of several by large energy companies looking for ways to keep old, inefficient coal power stations running which would otherwise have to close down by the end of 2015. We will be keeping people up to date about those developments and what can be done against them.
+ In Llangefni, Anglesey, EcoPellets' application for a biofuel power station, together with one for a biomass power plant and a pellet plant, was rejected unanimously by the planning committee this week. Thanks for people's help in objecting to this proposal!
+ Thanks again to everybody who has written to MPs and, in Scotland, MSPs about subsidies (ROCs, i.e. Renewable Obligation Certificates) for biofuels and biomass. Neither the UK nor the Scottish Government has issued a response to the consultation as yet, so decisions are still some weeks or months away. There is still time to contact your MP if you have not yet done so: www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2011/rocs-alerts/ .